Hitting Children is Wrong and the Law Must Say So - Now
Ending corporal punishment is an issue which touches most people very personally. Most of us were hit as children; most parents have hit their growing children. So far, globally, only about 17 states have completely prohibited all corporal punishment, with six or seven more committed to do so. In this region, I know that at least two – Brazil and Costa Rica – have had prohibition Bills presented to their Parliaments.
At the first two Regional Consultations for the UN Secretary General’s Study, in the Caribbean and two weeks ago in South Asia, clear recommendations to prohibit all corporal punishment, including in the family, were adopted. But I still heard government officials and NGOs and others making more excuses: “We must wait until there is more support for parents; more training for teachers; smaller classes. Let’s educate first and then change the law…” and so on. From children’s perspective this is intolerable. From the perspective of international human rights law it is illegal. Why should children wait? Would we wait to prohibit violence against women until we can provide full employment and universal anger management classes for men? Would we wait to ban hitting of elderly confused relatives until we have full-time nursing care, and full training for all carers, available for them?
No more excuses: this UN Study provides the opportunity to move quickly on, to put in the past the idea that states should authorise violence against children and instead focus on giving priority to ending all violence against children. State governments and all of us have to take a deep breath and stop deceiving ourselves - hitting children is wrong and the law must say so - now.
NEWELL, Peter. Disponível em: <http://www.crin.org/violence/search/closeup.asp?
infoID=5636>. Acesso em: 16 ago. 2010. (Adaptado).
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